Heritage building Nana Wada of Poona

Nana Wada, Poona, Maharastra. www.thealternative.in

Nana Wada, Poona, Maharastra www. virasatpune.com

Nana Phadnavis was the Peshwa’s chief administrative officer and wielded lots of power and prestige. Nana Phadnavis (also Fadanvis; February, 1742 ? – March 13, 1800) born Balaji Janardan Bhanu, was an influential minister. James Grant Duff states that he was called "the Maratha Machiavelli" by the Europeans. Nana died in Pune on the 13th of March 1800, just before Peshwa Baji Rao II placed himself in the hands of the British. This led to  the Second Anglo-Maratha War that  tolled the death knell for  the Maratha confederacy.  There are some monuments near Poona that extol the glory of Nana Phadnavis. Built in 1780 by Nana Phadnavis, Nana Wada is close to the famous Shaniwar Wada. Restoration work is undertaken to preserve the glory of this old building. Besides, Nana also built a regal Wada at Menavali near Wai,This  is considered to be a perfect model  of Wada architecture.

Nana Phadnavis,(1742 ? - Mar.1800) Minister,Maratha empire commons.wikimedia.org

Nana served the Peshwa dynasty for a long time and saw  through four rulers in succession. Despite the death of Madhavrao Peshwa, the Maratha Empire sustained  its glory and power under the able leadership of Nana Phadnavis  and grew in stature.. The wada still has  most of its original architectural  features. It is a large six-quadrangled, perimeter-protected  structure. On the  first floor is  Diwan-Khana (living room), and a veranda with paintings on the walls. Amazingly carved  wooden ceiling, arches, Cypress-shaped pillars, motifs of banana-flowers  will not escape the eyes of the visitors. Yet another attractive feature is the  balcony. It has a dome-shaped ceiling, called ‘meghdambari.’ The workmanship and the intricate wooden features enhance the regal status of Nana.
The corridors on the upper floor are lined with teak-wood lattice work. A concealed escape stairway in the wall leads out of the Wada in case of emergency. Descending the stone steps leads to the ghat on the river Krishna.

Nana Phadnavis  settled in the village  and had the wada built himself with the ghat on the river Krishna and the two temples, one dedicated to Lord Vishnu and another to Meneshwar Lord Shiva. 

Nana, being the Peshwas'  used the ancient "Modi" script  and "transcribed and maintained their records of accounts and administrative letters. These documents, known as the famous "Menavli Daptar" were preserved in this Wada at Menavali.

Deccan Education Society, one of the earliest promoters of  modern education  in this area, began running the New English School in this Wada in 1907 and as part of their expansion, an extension building  (annexe)  was built to meet additional demands. The colonial architectural style  of this building adds zest to this wada. Presently the wada houses a municipal school and a municipal office of old records.